7 Must-Change Accessories to Update a Room

Swap out these furnishings to give any room a fresh look.

U.S. News & World Report

7 Must-Change Accessories to Update a Room

luxury lamp and books on bedside table in bedroom

Table lamps come in a wide variety of styles, so be sure to select one that fits in with the rest of the room.(Getty Images)

Every room has four walls, a ceiling, floor and some furniture – but it’s what a homeowner uses as home decor that can create a warm, welcoming look that captures your personality. It's easy to refresh a home’s rooms from season to season with accents that bring a new take on style.

When choosing home decorations, try to stick to a general style theme and color palette. This way, pieces can be picked with different shapes, textures and sizes in mind to create a cohesive feel.

Want to perk up the color palette or personality of your home but don't want to redecorate the entire space? Here are ideas on how a few little touches can yield big results.

Make a statement on your wall. There are a few different ways to use artwork in a home. The main goal of wall art, though, is to make sure your focal point in the room stands out. Try using a large piece of art to lure the eye, or group smaller pieces together to create one large display.

Be repetitive when grouping objects together by using the same material frames or the same color in the art. Pay attention to size, balance, color and texture of wall art being used around the room.

Try a mirror. A mirror is a strategic accessory to use in a room. By placing a mirror on the opposite wall of a window it instantly reflects the natural light and easily doubles the amount of it in a room. A mirror can also make a room look larger than it actually is, and should be a must-have accessory in a small space.

Personalize the floor. Let’s move down to the floor; many designers start by choosing an area rug to help determine the rest of the room. A rug can pull a room together quickly because of its colors and textures. It’s important to use a rug to anchor furniture or to break up a large open space.

A rug will make a room feel warm and inviting, so use them to your advantage when selling, but don’t use a bunch of random small rugs around your home – that just creates clutter.

Use a rug about halfway under the bed to connect the bed and rug together in a space. Your furniture’s front legs or the entire piece of furniture can rest on the rug in the living room. A rug can create contrast as well with a white rug on a dark wood floor, for instance, and you can create interest by using a textured rug or even adding a patterned rug on top of a solid carpet to define a seating area.

Light up the room. A floor lamp is an easy product to use to add light just about anywhere and the best part is they can fit in a space where a table would not. But beware of placement to avoid showing cords or having guests or potential buyers trip over wires.

Table lamps are extremely versatile. There are many styles to choose from, so consider your current home decor. The most important thing to remember when purchasing a table lamp is to make sure it's proportionate to other items in the room. Too big or too small will just be an eyesore for buyers. You can also consider simply swapping out a lampshade to revive the room’s appearance.

Take a curtain call. Leaving windows naked in a home is a missed opportunity. Many homeowners struggle with window treatments because they don't exactly know what to do, especially when on a tight budget. Window treatments can get expensive, but you can find affordable curtain panels that can instantly change the look of a room. Figure out if you need a window treatment for privacy, light or both.

When hanging curtains, aim to solve a problem, such as making narrow windows wider, balancing out different-sized windows, fix a low ceiling or even cover up a bad view.

Make the bed. The bedroom is an escape from the daily grind for a homeowner, who should take pride in their sanctuary when slipping into bed. A bed is the focal point of the bedroom and should be dressed to impress. Make sure to have all the bedding essentials: a slipcover, sheet set, at least two pillows per person and a comforter or duvet to snuggle up with. Nothing livens up a space like colorful accent pillows on the bed. Swap them out seasonally to completely change the look of your bedroom without breaking the bank.

Throw ’em on. Speaking of throw pillows, don’t just use them in your bedroom. Add them on a couch, chair or even use them in a main room in the form of a pouf for kids to lounge on the floor with. Mix and match pillows by using different colors, sizes and textures to create a unique, one-of-a-kind look. On a budget, buy only new pillow covers and reuse the inserts to continue to freshen up the space.

Wealth of Knowledge Podcast

Wealth of Knowledge is a weekly podcast featuring tips and expert insight on all things money: personal finance, careers, investing, real estate and more.

Wealth of Knowledge logo